These baby-faced Olympians have a message for the competition: move it or lose it
September 18, 2000
By Anne Marie Cruz
Cheryl Haworth, 17
IT STARTED with trees. Cheryl Haworth, all of 10, dragged felled pines, some weighing nearly 100 pounds, by a rope looped around her waist. She wasn’t trying to build tree houses in her backyard in Savannah, Ga. With women lifters strapping in for their first Olympics, this super heavyweight could win the U.S.’s first lifting gold in 40 years. At the ’99 world championships in Athens, the 5’9”, 304-pound Haworth snatched 253.5 pounds, good enough for bronze in that event and fourth overall. This July, at the junior worlds in Prague, she finished second to Olympic rival Agata Wrobel of Poland. Every workout, Cheryl lifts 15 to 30 tons, and she’s upped her weights to 264.6 (snatch) and 319.7 (jerk). But she’s not just strong: She has a 24-inch vertical leap and runs a 5.5 40. Of course, it was World’s Strongest Man that inspired her best schoolgirl prank─lifting a teammate’s car and relocating it in the parking lot.